Real Madrid manager Zinedine Zidane admitted that the form the team displayed in pre-season was far from impressive and hopes for a quick improvement.
Ever the optimist, even Zinedine Zidane has had to admit defeat at the way the European champions have performed during the pre-season friendlies. Where as recently Zidane had told reporters recently that the unimpressive performances and results were not concerning. The latest defeat to the “MLS All-Stars” was enough to have him change his mind.
Sure, the game ended in a 1-1 draw after 90 minutes. And sure Real were playing a selection of MLS’ best players. And the MLS is a championship on the rise. However, even a loss on penalties for the Champions League champions against a team representing the MLS has to be seen as some sort of failure, albeit not a huge one.
But Real Madrid has been on a losing streak in a series of high-profile friendlies. The friendlies were meant to showcase one of Europe’s most famous clubs to the U.S. public. It turned out that Real lost to Manchester United on penalties, lost 4-1 to Manchester City and 3-2 to their biggest rivals, Barcelona.
“The sensation overall is not good. It’s good that we got the result, but the sensation is not positive overall. We only won one out of four games,” Zidane says. Real are set to begin the season playing Barcelona UEFA Super Cup next week.
Real’s manager that there are things that need to be improved and this needs to happen quickly. “The tour is done, now we have four days to go back and prepare for the Super Cup, which is our first official match, and obviously we have some things to work out.”
As for the reason for Real’s change in fortunes, Zizou cannot find any reason in particular but feels that all areas would need some improvement. “It’s a little bit of everything. We started poorly, especially with results, and sometimes we hit a bad streak in those four matches. What I want and what everyone wants is to get back home and have a little bit of a rest,” he says.
One notable absence from Real’s games was Portugal star, Cristiano Ronaldo. The player has to deal with a number of issues outside of the football pitch including having to go on trial for charges of tax fraud. Real’s manager says that overall it was a good idea to rest Ronaldo after a grueling season. “He needed to rest and have his holidays,” Zidane says. “It was important after a long year.”